Worst thing for me as a kid was $1.50 Christmas

My small grandchildren asked me today (Sept. 11, 2001) if anything as terrible as the New York City disaster happened in Rochelle when I was a boy. I said, “Well, to begin with, when I was about 4, in 1934, I heard my Daddy tell my Mother that he only had a dollar and a half to spend for Christmas.” That was a sad day for me. When I was about 8, I would hear the news on the radio where Hitler was killing all the Jews, tearing up Poland, and that we could be his next target. At age 11 on Sunday morning, Dec. 7, 1941, the Japs bombed Pearl Harbor, then in 1945, we dropped the atomic bomb on Japan. In April of that year, our famous president, FDR, passed away. He was the only president I ever knew up to that time. In high school from 1946-48, every week someone would say the Russians will drop an atomic bomb on us or that the world is coming to an end. Right after high school graduation, the Korean War started, and I knew we had to go into the service. The grandchildren said, “Stop. That is all horrible.” The worst thing to them was only a $1.50 for Christmas. Then they wanted to know what the U.S. should do now. I said there is only two things to do. One was to attack all the suspects. That way they would get the right one. This is like when I was in the fifth grade, someone had stolen a dime from a girl in my class. She said it had to be one of the boys. None os us said we did it so the teacher gave us all a spanking. The other thing is to teach old worn out men like myself to fly a big plane. Tell us where to go and fly it loaded with bombs. They all decided the worst thing of all was to have only $1.50 for Christmas.

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